So due to popular demand, I am no longer a man with a name. Instead, I'm back to being MNChiefsfan. And you know what, you guys were right. This feels much better. Plus, this makes the chance that a future employer sees something insane I've written and decides not only to fire me but to file a restraining order. Win / win.
There's not much time left until draft day, so let's fire up some mailbag questions. This time, I swear it's not merely one question, and Alex Smith will not be involved in any way, shape or form. As always, if you want to send me a question / comment / borderline hate crime, email me at MNchiefsfan@hotmail.com or tweet to @RealMNchiefsfan.
Oh, one last thing. If I haven't used a question / comment yet, don't worry. I'll (probably get there). If I never do, it's because your question was bad and you should feel bad. Let's get started.
I don't know a whole lot about the second tier of safeties, but one guy whose film I really liked (what limited I could find) is Florida State's Terrence Brooks. From what I've seen, he's anticipated to go in the late second or early third, so he could be tough to snag. But if I were to make my choice of "second tier" guys, it would be Brooks.
Videos showing every snap of Brooks in three games of 2013 can be found here, at the exceptional Draft Breakdown site. There's only so much you can tell, given that it's not an All-22 film, but it's better than nothing.
Brooks seems to have plenty of speed, he didn't seem to get caught out of position, and he was around the ball a great deal. One of the knocks on him is he doesn't tackle particularly well, and that's true. But he's willing to dive in and mix it up. Technique can be taught.
What I liked about Brooks the most based on those videos (and various scouting reports) is that he's a guy who knows where to be in coverage and has good ball instincts, AND he has the physical capability to cover a lot of ground. Last year we had two safeties playing deep who could do one or the other, and we know how that ended. In the three games I viewed he was at times asked to play single-high safety, which is a great sign for a team that (on the surface) might be lacking at the position.
There were some questions about his speed, but I didn't see that on film and he went ahead and ran a 4.42 40-yard dash at the Combine. He absolutely looks like a guy who could step in and play deep safety for the Chiefs immediately. If he drops into the third, I wouldn't hate a trade up to snatch him away before another team can.
The cupboard has been picked pretty bare at this point. Anyone who is left has some pretty serious baggage or just isn't very good.
One guy I'd at least kick the tires on is Miles Austin. I get that he had a very, very poor season this last year, but given the Chiefs current situation at receiver I don't see the harm. Give the guy a small, one year "prove-it" deal and see if he can help out. Again, this is more of a "Why not?" than anything else.
Man, outside of that ... there's just no one out there who makes me thing, "Hey, that might work out." Of course, this means that at least 15 of the guys who are left will make an impact this season. But I can't help that I'm usually wrong about these things. It's not my fault.
One player it would be fun to see the Chiefs try out is guard Richie Incognito. But that's mostly because it would be fun to watch the anarchy that would ensue here on Arrowhead Pride.
@RealMNchiefsfan What is the most important position out of ALL sports (refs and umps not eligible)?— Andre de Souza (@Knightwolfbr) April 17, 2014
That's a tough one. I'd say tennis player or golfer, since, you know, you're the only guy out there. Oh, you meant TEAM sports? Fair enough...
Quarterback is up there, naturally. Of course, the problem with quarterback is that you only play offense or defense (we're learning about football today, guys!). So even though a great offense can HELP a defense out, a quarterback is stuck looking helplessly at the field half the time.That makes it a tough sell for me.
One sport that eliminates that problem is basketball. Everyone plays offense and defense, so EVERY position could be considered the "most important in sports" if you've got a superstar. The reason the Miami Heat will very, very, very likely make the Finals this year is that they have LeBron James. That said, one player isn't enough in basketball regardless of position. You can have the best player on the court play a perfect game and lose because of inferior talent across the board.
That's true with every position in every sport, you say? I respectfully disagree. There are two positions that can completely and totally take over a game: pitcher and goalie (hockey, not soccer. Mostly because I don't understand soccer, therefore I fear it). A pitcher can essentially win a game for his team completely by himself, at least in the National League. If you have a pitcher who plays a perfect game (as in pitches a perfect game and hits a home run in every at bat), you are GUARANTEED a win regardless of what every single other player on your team does. Seriously, you could have every other guy not even show up and you'd win. There's no other position like that in sports.
That said, pitchers don't play every game, and it tends to take away from your importance when you miss 75 percent of the games. That leaves goalie.
Now, I'm not a good hockey mind (even though I'm from Minnesota. I know, I'm a disgrace), but one thing I've noticed as I've idly watched the Minnesota Wild in the playoffs is that when a goalie goes through a dominant stretch on the ice, that's all that matters out there. And (as far as I know) unlike with pitchers, goalies are actually out there every game (or is it most games? Crap, that seems like it'd be hard on the knees and back).
So when it comes to throughout the year, I'd say goalie is overall the most important position in sports. On a game-by-game basis, however, pitcher (when he's hitting) trumps everything. It's the one position in team sports where a single player could literally win a game on his own without anyone else stepping on the field (granted, that would be a pretty insane scenario, but still).
Man, that's a tough one. This is the kind of question that makes you ask yourself what your priorities really are.
At the end of the day, though, I know what choice I'd make If someone walked up to me today and said, "I can either guarantee you a Chiefs Super Bowl win or $10,000," I'm going with the cash. Now before you crucify me as a legal sellout, hear me out.
I'm a father of four. I'm not my own person. $10,000 is a lot of money that could go toward paying down student loans and / or setting up savings accounts for my kids' futures. I know it's incredibly boring of me and makes my fanhood look cheap, but at the end of the day this stuff isn't real life. It's a game. Family trumps football every time.
Now, if it were just $5,000? Well, then that's a much longer discussion between myself and Mrs. MNChiefsfan. I have a feeling I'd come out on the losing end, but I'd fight to the last breath.
Ok Seth, here's a serious one that maybe you can have fun with...
IF the following things prove true in 2014:
- Husain Abdulah / Sanders Commings combine for five interceptions and leave us saying "Kendrick who?"
- Vance Walker can beat a single-team 25 percent of the time
- Joe Mays plays at least as well as Akeem Jordan
- Rishaw Johnson plays at least as well as Geoff Schwartz
- All other returning players play at least as well as they did last year
Are we a Super Bowl contender?
Are we in the same tier as Seattle, San Francisco, Denver?
Who would still be flat out better than us?
Oh, and if Dorsey decides to draft a zombie, what position would it play?
First of all, Bill, every time I see your name I relax a little bit. So thanks for making my day a bit better.
Second, that’s a KILLER question. And it makes me happy. So win / win. I’m going to take your first point on Abdullah and Commings to mean not only do they have interceptions, but they play well at the free safety position for the Chiefs.
I have to say, if that specific scenario lays out that way, the Chiefs are going to be a TOUGH team to beat. Having two safeties playing at a solid level would shore up the biggest weakness from last season. Walker being able to beat single-teams even that often would spell problems for opposing offenses in that every four snaps they’re looking at pressure. Unless, of course, they double Walker, in which case Dontari Poe might actually snap someone in half. I don’t think he’d even know what to do if he were single-teamed. Maybe laugh?
All that said, I see the Chiefs as a Super Bowl contender in that specific scenario. The thing is, I see every playoff team as a Super Bowl contender. The Ravens, Cardinals and Giants have shown us over the last half dozen years that all you need to do is get your foot in the door. Then you’ve got a puncher’s chance. And with the Chiefs pass rush and secondary upgraded, I see the defense as sitting in the top five without too much of an issue.
The principal concern, for me, would be the offense performing against great defenses. The Chiefs receiver group is still weak in this scenario (at least, it wasn’t addressed) and Jamaal Charles can only do so much. There’s a certain quarterback I’m not going to talk about to take into consideration, but since I’m not going to talk about him we’ll leave it at that. I’d see the Chiefs as a legitimate Super Bowl threat based on the defensive improvements alone. The offense (combined with a stellar special teams unit under demigod Dave Toub) should be good enough to help carry the load.
I would put the Chiefs as a notch below Seattle (who is just stacked) and on par with San Francisco (who I think is at risk to regress this season) as well as Denver. I have no idea what Denver will look like this season, but the safe bet is they’ll be very good. That said, I’m not buying the idea that they upgraded much of anything this offseason other than T.J. Ward (who is a heckuva player). Big names? Yes. Names that were outproduced by the guys they had on the roster last year? Absolutely. So we’ll see.
But the scenario you laid out is a very positive one for the Chiefs. It’s all about that fourth pass rusher and the over-the-top coverage. If those two things go right (without steps backward elsewhere) the Chiefs defense will be rolling with the big dogs this year.
Oh, and zombie position? He’s gotta be your kick / punt returner. That way you keep him out of the huddle (where he’ll, you know, eat teammates) and he’ll just do his thing on the field. No one is going to get close enough to tackle him. Instant touchdowns! Of course, again, you’ll have to be sure to warn the special teams units to not turn their back. I got a feeling demigod Dave Toub would find new and creative blocking schemes that involved the players always facing the zombie. He’s got this.
Less than a week to go to the draft. I’ve got a few draft questions I’ll try to crank out early next week. I think I got a Game Of Thrones question too, which is a relief, as I started to lose faith in you guys. Until then, send me MOAR mailbag material! I never get tired of having other people come up with ideas for me answering your questions.